End Predatory Practices

Banks like Wells Fargo are taking advantage of the complexities of banking and merchant fees, while food delivery apps are taking advantage of a necessity like food because there are few alternatives.

Food Delivery Services

The average consumer using food delivery apps will have paid anywhere between 7% and 91% more than diners in restaurants.

Predatory Merchant Fees

We Can:

  • Protect consumers from hidden banking fees

  • Stop the overcharging of basic necessities

  • Set precedent for future consumer protection

Predatory merchant fees are hiking up prices and hiding fees from customers. Banks like Wells Fargo are taking advantage of the complexities of banking and merchant fees, while food delivery apps are taking advantage of a necessity like food because there are few alternatives. The Commissioner has the power to challenge organizations taking advantage of American consumers.

Understanding the complexities of bank charges and the hidden fees on food delivery apps can be difficult for the average person. Corporations take advantage of this and place predatory fees, overcharging. Taking advantage of customers at any time is an unethical practice, it is even more so when customers are being hit by high prices.

 

Wells Fargo has had a history of predatory practices. Price hikes, spontaneous changes on fixed prices, and even lying to customers who tried to address issues, creating fake data and transactions, were just misconduct from 2010 to 2017.[1] Wells Fargo had a class action filed against them in 2021 for overcharging merchants, in which they had to pay out up to $40 million. They increased the monthly bills for businesses with unnecessary fees. The sum of the high charges as well as other compensation is what the merchants are attempting to recover.[2] Not only are the individual account holders, but businesses that bank with Wells Fargo are also being taken advantage of. Regardless of all the exposed malpractice occurring within Wells Fargo, there are over 700 locations in Florida, 10% of all their locations.[3] [4]

Predatory fees are not only used by banks. Food delivery services, which boomed in popularity in 2020, load fees on top of overcharging prices for menu items on the apps. From 2014 to 2016, food delivery services have grown at a rate of 300%.[5] Doordash and Grubhub are just two of the numerous apps on the market.[6] The average consumer using food delivery apps will have paid anywhere between 7% and 91% more than diners in restaurants.[7] During the pandemic, and currently as well, food delivery services have capitalized on added fees and increasing prices, making them the pricier option. They do not only target buyers; UberEats, a large player in the food delivery market, charge restaurants a commission rate of 30%.[8]

 

[1] https://www.forbes.com/sites/eriksherman/2021/09/28/wells-fargo-gets-into-trouble-yet-again-over-alleged-fraud/?sh=50106c503572

[2] https://classactionsreporter.com/settlement/wells-fargo-merchant-services-charges-settlement/#:~:text=Case%20Summary%3A,excessive%20charges%20and%20other%20relief.

[3] https://www.scrapehero.com/location-reports/Wells%20Fargo-USA/

[4] https://www.fool.com/investing/general/2016/03/30/wells-fargos-branch-network-is-an-advantage.aspx

[5] https://lunchbox.io/learn/restaurant-operations/delivery-app-fees

[6] https://www.businessinsider.com/doordash-grubhub-chicago-lawsuit-claims-misleading-customers-prices-2021-8

[7] https://www.forbes.com/sites/suzannerowankelleher/2020/02/27/meal-delivery-apps-can-charge-markups-as-high-as-91/?sh=619306a57c24

[8] https://www.deliverect.com/en/blog/online-food-delivery/uber-eats-101-the-essential-guide-for-restaurants

Education

So, What Can We Do?!

By Chapter 507, Section 37 of the Florida Statutes, the Commissioner of Agriculture has the power to protect consumers from these types of practices. The Statute outline that if “the interests of the consumers of this state have been damaged or are being damaged, or that the public health, safety, or welfare is endangered or is likely to be endangered by any consumer product or service, to commence legal proceedings in circuit court to enjoin the act or practice or the sale of the product or service and may seek appropriate relief on behalf of consumers.” The Commissioner has the ability to put an end to predatory and hidden fees.

 

The goal is to reign in the corporations’ overreach with their greed, to stop the added hidden fees that overcharge both the people and small businesses. Banking is practically a necessity, the Commissioner wants to make it safer for the consumer by protecting them from predatory hidden fees. Much like banking, food delivery has become a staple part of many daily lives. The Commissioner wants to protect consumers from organizations lining their pockets with your money by charging you extra.